Introducing Grandma Sparrow
Oh hello, hello to reach and one of all my children!
My title is Gr-r-r-andma for all these whoʼs wonder in slumber and still grin!
Follow me to the plunderfull town of Piddletractor, where we will search for my naughty little nephew, Alewishus, the clown prince of Piddletractor!
Thus begins the mythic non-saga of Grandma Sparrow, his nephew, and the various denizens of Piddletractor, USA. Joe Westerlund puts his performance alter-ego through the trademark Spacebomb wringer: strings, horns, and groovy houseband to produce a wild new thing, a psychedelic children’s song-cycle for adults that doesn’t defy description so much as dance around it and pull at its nose. It’s the kind of project that is rarely dreamed up these days, rarer still to be executed with such skill, bravado and glee (complete with an amateur youth choir). And on May 20th, Spacebomb will be proud to release Grandma Sparrow & his Piddletractor Orchestra (SB004) into the world.
Indy Week premiered the album teaser video today, calling the record a “sonic playground…[that] embraces absurdist humor and childlike whimsy, impulsive improvisation and pop collisions.” Watch the album teaser below:
May 16 – Richmond, VA @ Coalition Theater
w/ improv comedy by Pigeon
May 18 – Durham, NC @ The Pinhook (Sunday Brunch)
w/ Alexandra Sauser-Monnig (of Mountain Man)
Grandma Sparrow & his Piddletractor Orchestra (SB004) will be released on May 20th on Spacebomb Records (CD/LP/Digital)
Listen: Matthew E. White – “Ain’t That What Love Is”
It’s Valentine’s Day, so we thought what a perfect time to share this track from Matthew E. White, “Ain’t That What Love Is,” originally released as the B-side of his and Spacebomb’s first release. That 7″ record, “One of These Days,” (SB001) co-released with Hometapes, paved the way for White’s critically acclaimed full-length Big Inner (SB002) and the myriad of live performances around the world that followed. But today, on Valentine’s Day, we only hear him sing the reassurance of unconditional love: “I’ll pick you up when you’re down / Ain’t that what love is?” The love song is now available digitally, so grab it on iTunes or Amazon.
Listen: Howard Ivans – Pillows Dub
Listen to “Pillows (Version)” dub by Matthew E. White and Trey Pollard, originally premiered by IMPOSE Magazine:
On November 19th, we introduced Howard Ivans to the world via a 7″ single penned and sung by a man born with the name of Ivan Howard. In the spirit of collaboration and improvisation, Spacebomb’s Matthew E. White and Trey Pollard, whose own arranging voices abound throughout the two songs, had a go at creating a live dub remix of Side A, “Red Face Boy,” and now they follow it up with a stripped down dub of Side B, “Pillows.”
“This dub version of ‘Pillows’ gives the listener a privy view into the dynamics of Ivans’ arrangement,” writes IMPOSE Magazine of the remix, calling it a “mellow odyssey for the mind.” Read more, including an interview with Howard Ivans.
Watch: Matthew E. White’s Human Style
Throughout a busy year of 120+ performances around the world and countless interviews for radio and magazines, Matthew E. White has often referred to what we call the Spacebomb Process. It’s part of what makes a Spacebomb Production special, and now the new video for White’s “Human Style” begins to capture it. Filmed mostly in the Spacebomb attic in Richmond by Michael Taliaferro and Tony Forgey, we see all of the instrument groups that make up the family in action: the house band of Cameron Ralston and Pinson Chanselle, strings, choir, horns, and more. Watch the video and stay tuned for another Spacebomb Production very soon.
Outer Face EP and Big Inner: Outer Face Edition are both available now on Domino.
Director: Tony Forgey
Edited by: Tony Forgey
Photography by: Tony Forgey and Michael Taliaferro
Howard Ivans Red Face Boy 7″ Released Today
photo by Ryan Patterson
Today marks the release of Howard Ivans‘ debut songs, “Red Face Boy” and “Pillows,” collectively known as SB003. Spacebomb is proud to have co-created these songs, aiding in the transformation from Ivan Howard to Howard Ivans and lending the voices of our house band and arrangers, and releasing them as a limited pressing on 7″ vinyl as well as digitally online.
See Howard Ivans’ tour dates with Matthew E. White below.
“Magnificent art-funk treasure” — SPIN
“Impressive…elaborate symphonic funk in the vein of Quincy Jones” — UNCUT
“Slick, upper-midwest funk” — Pitchfork
“Insanely catchy” — Speakers in Code
A. Red Face Boy
Howard Ivans tour dates
Dec. 4 – Allston, MA – Great Scott * (tickets)
Dec. 5 – Brooklyn, NY – Music Hall of Williamsburg * (tickets)
Dec. 6 – Philadelphia, PA – Johnny Brenda’s * (tickets)
Dec. 7 – Washington, DC – Rock & Roll Hotel * (tickets)
Dec. 13 – Wilmington, NC – Bourgie Nights ^
Dec. 14 – Raleigh, NC – Kings Barcade # (tickets)
Dec. 15 – Richmond, VA – Strange Matter # (tickets)
* w/ Matthew E. White, dosh
^ w/ Summer Set
# w/ Matthew E. White